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TikTok Competitor: Taking A Look At TikTok And Its Closest Rival (Instagram Reel)

TikTok Competitor: Taking A Look At TikTok And Its Closest Rival (Instagram Reel)

InstagramReels

In today's world of social media platforms, TikTok stands tall at the top of the pile. Formerly known as musical.ly, TikTok is as successful as it is for a number of reasons. For starters, the social media platform in its current form fills a void that its predecessors like Vine had left in the social media space. It is, therefore, not difficult to see why the social media app has taken off in popularity the way that it had.

Importantly, it does not hurt that the current TikTok algorithm within the app and the ability to share videos to other major platforms seem to support the viral reach of videos. Even TikTok users that are numbered among "the least of these" will post a video that will get likes, views, comments, and good support. Some go on to be viral, reaching far beyond the app and become Internet phenomenons. Add to that the fact that the tag of the person whose video is being shared remains throughout the duration of the video, and you get users who are eager to use the platform and grow their profiles in the social media space.

A Closer Look At TikTok Competitor Instagram Reels

In many ways (before Facebook bought the app), Instagram had a much freer algorithm where hashtags yielded a greater reach for the content posted by users and the chances of posting viral content were much higher. However, that has significantly changed. As such, other social media apps like TikTok have been allowed to take up space. The competition has forced Instagram to evolve and implement new features. The most recent feature in this evolution is the addition of Reels which are very TikTokesque in how it functions.

Some popular features that IG Reels and TikTok share include stitching together shorter videos that combine to make one video that is designed to promote a particular idea, point, or just for fun. The use of filters, as well as the addition of music, text, voice alterations, and other features, are among the TikTok adaptations used on IG Reels.

It is true that IG Instagram has done well through Reels to ensure that they don't lose a significant portion of their user-base to TikTok by now offering TikTok's appeal right there in the IG app. However, it is hardly likely that this will hurt TikTok in a similar manner that IG Stories arguably hurt Snapchat. For starters, TikTok by design (algorithm and sharability features) plays to the desire for virality that brands, influencers, and other users are looking for with their digital brands.

YouTube Launches Shorts As Competitor To TikTok

YouTube Launches Shorts As Competitor To TikTok

YoutubeShorts

YouTube 's new short-form video service, YouTube Shorts, will soon be available in over 100 countries after being trialed in selected markets. It has been developed as a competitor for the popular TikTok platform and was first released in India for beta testing earlier this year where its uptake tripled over several months. YouTube is essentially playing catch-up with its popular TikTok competitor but also aims to integrate its Shorts offering with the wider YouTube platform as a key method for attracting new users and expanding its reach.

YouTube Shorts

The YouTube Shorts service provides functions for producing short video content that are very similar to its TikTok competitor. It allows users to record, edit and share video content that can be up to 60 seconds in length and also allows popular music to be included. Users have access to a range of tools that allow them to start and stop recording with a single tap with the service offering a small number of editing features. These include controls that allow the audio to be sped up or slowed down, a countdown timer, the ability to insert text overlays at chosen points and the ability to adjust colors.

TikTok Comparison

While YouTube shorts offers a convenient tool for choosing music to be used in the video it does not have the automatic sound synchronization feature of TikTok which made the app more accessible and popular with first-time users. In addition, YouTube's offering lacks the wide catalog of special effects that TikTok offers - such as augmented reality functions and the ability to use a green-screen. YouTube Shorts, like Instagram Reels and other competitors, are seeking to make the features of TikTok available to users that want to create and publish short video content on their social media platforms.

US Commerce Department Rescinds TikTok Ban

US Commerce Department Rescinds TikTok Ban

TikTokUSA

The US Commerce Department has announced that it is rescinding a decision made to place Chinese owned TikTok and WeChat on a list of applications that were prohibited from transactions by US citizens. The ban was issued in September of last year by the Trump administration in a bid to stop any additional downloads of the apps.

Presidential Executive Orders

President Joe Biden recently withdrew a number of executive orders by the previous president that sought to block any new downloads of the apps which are owned by the Chinese company Tencent and ordered the Commerce Department to conduct a review of any security concerns posed by these and other Chinese-made apps. The previous administration had established the so-called 'TikTok ban' in response to concerns about data being gathered on US citizens by China and also sought to ban transactions with other apps, including WeChat, which would have effectively banned their use in the US. WeChat has reportedly been downloaded by more than 19 million users in the US and has become a widely used platform for payments, services and games. Biden's new executive order revokes the bans against WeChat and TikTok as well as against another eight communication and financial software applications.

While Biden's executive order rescinded the bans, it nonetheless directed the Commerce Department to continue monitoring applications like TikTok to determine whether they could impact US national security. It also ordered the department to present recommendations within 120 days that would help to protect US data acquired or made available to companies controlled by other foreign adversaries.

National Security Concerns

TikTok remains one of the world's most popular social media apps and China's foreign ministry welcomed the move as a positive move urging the US to respect the free market and not to use so-called national security concerns to suppress China's tech industry. The effort by the Trump administration to effectively ban various Chinese apps had led to numerous legal challenges which had the effect of heightening tensions between the two countries. Last year a US district court judge granted a temporary injunction to TikTok that blocked the effort to ban downloading the app. At the time Trump had approved a bid by US tech company Oracle (backed by Walmart) to purchase TikTok but the move failed to gain approval from China's regulators. The app is believed to have more than 1 billion users world wide and is particularly popular with younger users.

A Look at TikTok's New Ecommerce Features

A Look at TikTok's New Ecommerce Features

eCommerce

Developed and launched in 2016 by ByteDance, TikTok is a social media application that allows users to share short videos. In early 2020, TikTok gained massive popularity across the globe, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic that triggered the social isolation and lockdown policies. While this application was solely meant for entertainment at first, e-commerce sellers are now taking advantage of it to market their products. With that in mind, here's a look at some of the new TikTok's new features.

TikTok Product Links

This feature allows the seller to add a product link, which enables the users to click and view the products in the online shop. This way, TikTok sellers get to market their products on this platform without necessarily displaying them.

Short Video Displays

Apart from adding a link to your products, TikTok also allows you to display your products in form of short videos. Here, you can demonstrate the actual working of the product and get people interested in purchasing it.

Livestreamed Shopping

This feature allows brands and influencers to host shopping livestreams, enabling viewers to view products and make in-app purchases in real-time. The TV shopping channel feature is suitable for brands and influencers that command a massive fan following.

TikTok's Competitors

Currently, TikTok is competing with numerous other ecommerce platforms such as Shopify, Wix, Square online, BigCommerce, and Squarespace. Despite their different business models, these platforms target virtually the same audience, meaning the competition in this space is cutthroat.

TikTok Partnership With Shopify

In October 2020, TikTok announced a partnership with Shopify that would allow at least 1 million merchants to market and sell their products through video ads. So far, the TikTok for Business feature enables ecommerce entrepreneurs to create and run campaigns on TikTok and engage their online communities. Beyond advertising their offerings on TikTok, merchants can also sell their offerings on the platform, and therefore, earn money on the platform.

TikTok US: What The Future Holds For The Popular Social Media App

TikTok US: What The Future Holds For The Popular Social Media App

OracleTikTokUS

TikTok is one of the most popular social media platforms out today. From trending dances to sketch comedies, social media influencers are really finding creative ways to make great content, brand themselves, and earn livable salaries. Still, the social media platform has not been without its challenges and controversy.

What Is TikTok and Why Is TikTok US In the Throes of Political Discourse

TikTok, in many ways, is like the popular Vine app we had a few years ago. Like Vine, TikTok is a video social media app where 'real short videos' take center-stage. The short-form video app has been the source of viral dances that have taken pop songs up the Billboard charts, as well as spearheaded viral political activism and satirical content. It is the virality of its content that has added to the app's popularity and rapid rise within the pop culture digital dynamic.

All things considered (including the shareability of its content to just about every other popular social media platform), all is good and well in the world of TikTok. Well, except for its owner, that is. The TikTok app is owned by Chinese company ByteDance. The concern is that user data can be handed over to the Chinese government if so required. The owners of TikTok has pointed to the fact that they are against such practices and would not hand over user data at the request of the Chinese or any other government. Still, the United States (US) government considers the app to be a national security threat and commands that the app owner meet the outlined requirements of risk being banned in the US.

The Ultimatum: The Only Solution the Trump Administration Will Accept

Even with the best efforts of the owners of TikTok to reassure the US government and other critics that the app does not use spy technologies nor is it a threat to national security, the Trump administration has laid down the gauntlet. The ultimatum is simply this, be banned in the US or be owned by a US company with user data being held and controlled on US soil - far from access by foreign governments and espionage. With the option to be US-owned, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

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